Pilot Project to Close Materials Cycle for Beverage Cartons

Komunala Novo mesto d.o.o. was the first municipal services company in Slovenia to take part in a pilot project to close the materials cycle for waste milk, juice and other beverage cartons (used beverage cartons or UBCs).

Through a series of specially designed activities, they were encouraging schools and households to collect UBCs separately and to pass as many of them on to recycling as possible. This was part of Novo Mesto’s efforts to gradually establish its own closed materials loop for waste beverage cartons, thereby securing enough raw materials to produce its own supply of sanitary paper over the long term.

Komunala Novo mesto provides municipal services for eight municipalities covering a total population of 65,000. According to the information, this population disposes enough waste milk and juice UBCs per year in yellow containers or bags to provide just enough resource of cellulose for the production of annual quantity of sanitary paper used by local public institutions – municipal government offices, schools, nursery schools, health centers, libraries and the like. “Around 45 hectares of woodland would have to be felled to make this quantity of sanitary paper; but if all UBCs in the area covered by Komunala Novo mesto were recycled into sanitary paper, this would meet the entirety of local needs and, moreover, save around 1,100 trees and provide total independence from primary resources,” Italian paper company Lucart Group informed. “In a desire to lead the way in establishing this method of conserving the environment, Komunala Novo mesto has decided to take part in the pilot project.”

As reported, the key partners in these efforts to close the materials cycle for UBCs in Novo mesto are: Komunala Novo mesto (Slovenia), Dinos DROE Unirec waste packaging management company (Slovenia), Lucart Group (Italy), and Eko Iniciativa – community of businesses and institutions that practice sustainable professional facility hygiene were set up and coordinated by Valtex & Co. (Slovenia).

Photo: O. Kürth

GR 22017